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Development corporation gets final go-ahead

Roseville City Council adopts bylaws, loans $5 million to nonprofit entity
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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Roseville City Councilmembers could barely contain their excitement Monday as they finalized plans for the formation of a community development corporation. The council unanimously approved an operating agreement, bylaws and business plan for the Roseville Community Development Corporation, created for the primary purpose of implementing the city’s revitalization goals. Members of Roseville’s business community will gather at Civic Center Tuesday evening to learn more about opportunities available through the new corporation. The city expects more than 100 developers, bankers, brokers and merchants to attend, said city spokeswoman Megan MacPherson. The City Council passed the resolution forming the nonprofit entity Oct. 21, but needed city staff to follow up with the supplemental documents. “As a development tool for the city, the Roseville Community Development Corporation’s focus will be a catalyst for development in our downtown area and creating economic growth … throughout our entire community,” said Assistant City Manager John Sprague, during the Nov. 29 meeting. Declining tax increment revenue and state budget cuts have limited the Roseville Redevelopment Agency’s ability to fund future projects downtown. This is a new tool to continue those revitalization efforts, Sprague said. The corporation will be looking to private-public partnerships to jumpstart development projects. The redevelopment agency will loan the corporation $5 million to cover start-up costs and initiate work on two development projects to be under construction by Jan. 1, 2013. The corporation will have a five-member board of directors appointed by the City Council and comprised mainly of people with finance and business operations expertise. No elected officials can serve on the board. The volunteer board won’t receive compensation besides mileage and travel reimbursement. City Manager Ray Kerridge will appoint the corporation’s chief executive officer and city employees will initially staff the organization. Kerridge started tossing around the idea of a community development corporation soon after taking the helm as the city’s top administrator in June. Several members of the public spoke in support of the corporation during Monday’s meeting, including Michael Malinowski, an architect with Applied Architecture, Inc. in Sacramento, a firm responsible for turning the historic Globe Mills into affordable senior housing and loft apartments. “One observation I’ve made with these endeavors is the public sector never has the resources to take these kinds of problems and solve them,” Malinowski said. “The private sector actually doesn’t either.” He said 99 percent of all development occurs as the result of a public and private partnership. Bob Moreno of Brookhurst Development, a national company that focuses on partnerships between public and private entities, called the corporation “cutting edge.” Moreno noted that Walnut Creek’s vibrant downtown shopping and dining district, and San Diego’s popular Gaslamp Quarter came about through the work of community development corporations. Tammy Medlock, a local real-estate agent, commended the council for making the community “vibrant and new” by focusing on redevelopment. She said the Old Town historic district is booming on Friday and Saturday nights. “I was amazed to go have a drink one night and see the life down there,” she said. “As a business owner, I’m really excited to see how this thing is going to roll out.” Sena Christian can be reached at senac@goldcountrymedia.com.